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Vertonghen wants favoured role

Tottenham Hotspur’s Jan Vertonghen wants to return to central defence after filling in at left fullback early in the 2012/13 season.

The 25-year-old made his name as a ball-playing centre-back with Ajax but has featured at fullback as cover for the injured Benoit Assou-Ekotto since sealing a 10 million-euro move to north London in the off season.

While revealing his national team coach Marc Wilmots is happy for him to be deployed out wide, the Belgian international has said his preferred position is in the middle of defence.

“At Tottenham I play left-back because of injuries. Marc Wilmots likes that perhaps, but I’ve got other ambitions,” he told reporters.

Vertonghen is with the Belgium national team ahead of their 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifying clash away to Serbia on Friday, a game which he believes will be a difficult prospect.

“The match in Serbia will be one of the hardest, but everyone knows how important this is and is very sharp. We’ll go for the three points, but must be sharp in the defence,” he said.

“Serbia is starting a new phase where a lot of new players must be integrated. It looks like the situation we were in a few years ago and everyone knows how hard that is. We must take advantage of that.”

Wed 10 October, 2012
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